Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Thank You Marshall County Community Foundation

The Marshall County Community Foundation awarded a grant of $2400 to Plymouth Community School Corporation to purchase a special evacuation chair for safely moving persons in a wheelchair down a staircase in an emergency. Thank you to the Foundation and to Kelly Skirvin who completed the grant application.

Blog Bits

School Board Meeting
The Board of Trustees met in regular session on April 20, 2006. In addition to its regular business, the board: Heard a report on the School Improvement Plan at Webster Elementary from Donna Burroughs. Reviewed the elementary, junior high, and high school handbooks. The next board meeting will be on May 11th. The board will meet in Executive Session to conduct interviews at 5:00 p.m. with the open board meeting to commence at 7:00 p.m. The meeting will be held in the board room

Construction Update
Jefferson Elementary site work is scheduled to begin this week. Once the sidewalks and pavement have been installed, the carpeting in the building will be installed.

At the new Menominee Elementary, all cement floors are now in place. The building is entirely under roof. The stairways connecting the first and second floors at the south end of the instructional wing are installed and in use. Casework installation is underway in the north wing of the building. Plumbers, electricians, and sheet metal workers continue the installation of their respective equipment. The laborer’s union has established informational pickets against Hagerman Construction at the site. The other trades are continuing their work.

The bids for the rehabilitation of the soccerplex are due at the administration office on May 8th.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Fog Delay

Due to the fog, Plymouth Community Schools will be on a 2 hour delay this morning.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Blog Bits

Board Update
The Board of Trustees met in regular session on April 6, 2006. In addition to its regular business, the Board:
Heard a report on the planning for activities at Riverside Elementary from Mrs. Burroughs.
Reviewed the Intermediate School handbook.
Appointed Rick Ruud and John Hill to the Wage Committee.

Construction Update
The contractors continue to address items on the punch list at Webster, Washington, Lincoln, and Plymouth High School. Payments to contractors at those locations are now being held until punch list items have been completed.

At Riverside Intermediate School, there is some seeding that will be completed during the spring season. Signage will be installed over the front door.

At Jefferson Elementary, casework and the H-vac system has been installed. Ceiling grids are in place with the new light fixtures installed. The ceiling pads will be installed during the next two weeks. The building is ready for carpet. The installation of the carpet will be put on hold until sidewalks into the new area are installed.

At the new Menominee, the second floor masonry work in the instructional area has been completed. Masons are now focusing on the main entrance canopy and the canopy located by the dining room. The veneer brick on the east elevation has been completed. The stairway for the instructional area was delivered during the week of April 10. The basketball backstops will be delivered for the gym the week of April 17th. The entire building is now under roof. The parapet and counter flashing materials were delivered on the 3rd of April. Installation will begin next week. Panel deliveries will take place at the end of April. The installation of the dining room windows has begun. The installation of ceramic tile in the kitchen and restroom areas began on April 10. Ceiling grids have been installed in the art room and four kindergarten rooms and kitchen area. The gypsum board has been installed in the office area. The hood for the kitchen area was delivered on 4-13. The unit ventilators for the building are scheduled for delivery on April 17th. Case work was delivered for the art room, kindergarten rooms, and office area during the week of 4-10. The Unit A lights and wiring are 90% complete. The lights are installed in the gymnasium area.

Riverside PTO
The next organizational meeting of the Riverside PTO will be on Tuesday evening, April 25th at 6:30 p.m. at Webster Elementary. That evening, members will elect officers. Anyone interested in becoming an office in the Riverside PTO should plan to attend.

Webster Celebration
On April 7, the Webster staff celebrated being selected earning 4-Star school status for two years and nomination as a national Blue Ribbon school. Congratulations to the Webster staff on those outstanding achievements.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Blog Bits

NCA Conference
April 2, 3, and 4, 2006, 10 teachers and administrators from Plymouth Community Schools attended the NCA national conference in Chicago, Illinois.

The attendees had a choice to attend over 100 sessions on problem solving, writing, reading, and various other school improvement sessions.

As always, the teachers and administrators came back with helpful ideas to use for the school’s improvement plans.

Problem Solving Summit
On Thursday, April 6th, 20 principals and staff members held the first annual Problem Solving Summit.

A full day of research and discussion led to a consensus on the following. What should problem solving look like in Plymouth Schools for the next four years? What instructional strategies need to be made to make ourselves better teachers and make our students better problem solvers? How do teachers and administrators establish an accountability system for the professional staff as they work towards problem solving skills? What formative assessment and formative data should be completed in order to focus on improving problem solving skills? And finally, what summative assessment and summative data should be used to show the gains that we will make in the next four years?

The schools now have clearly defined parameters to take back to their committees and complete the school improvement plan for problem solving.

Marshall County Home Show
Over the weekend, thousands of people enjoyed the Marshall County Home Show in the Plymouth High School’s multi-purpose room. This is the first major event to take place in the multi-purpose room and we hope this area will be used by the community many times over.

Dinner and Play
On Saturday night, nearly 100 people enjoyed Alpha Delta Rho’s madrigal dinner and play. The Crimson Connection sang and those who were in attendance were welcome to a tremendous meal and well-written and well-acted play. Hats off to Alpha Delta Rho and the Crimson Connection.

Crimson Connection
And finally, Sunday afternoon, a large contingent watched the Crimson Connection sing in their last concert of the year. Mrs. Glaub said a tearful goodbye to her seniors in the chorus and the crowd was treated to an excellent concert. This may be the last concert for the year but we look forward to what the Crimson Connection brings us next year.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Blog Bits

Welcome back! We hope you had a relaxing spring break.

Health Savings Accounts
Some employees have asked if we have a Health Savings Account (HAS) program. We do not have an HSA program at this time. MASE has an insurance option that qualifies for a HAS program.

The district is exploring the possibility of an HAS with PEA. The following link: Health Savings Account Answers , has information regarding the concept.

Special Education Pre-School Payments
We were informed this week, by the Department of Education, that the pre-school program costs for distribution are $15,768,551 for the entire State of Indiana. The State of Indiana has only appropriated $11,315,435 resulting in a deficiency of $4,453,120. The Pre-Special Education payment to each school district will be reduced by $325.59 per pre-school student. The JESSE Board faces the challenge of providing services with reduced resources. It seems to us that discussions at the state level might be better focused on the neediest of our children rather than some of the topics that were in the spotlight.

New High School Course and Credit Requirements
The Indiana State Board of Education has adopted new course and credit requirements for earning a high school diploma. These new requirements go into effect for students entering high school in the fall of 2006. The State Department of Education has prepared a FAQ regarding this topic. The Frequently Asked Questions link is a valuable resource for parents.